Senate GOP Resorting To Blatant Dishonesty & Hypocrisy To Jam Through Graham-Cassidy
During the Obama Administration, the GOP resorted to a series of disingenuous process arguments in an attempt to defeat the ACA and discredit the bill once it became law. Notwithstanding those phony arguments, the ACA received over 100 hearings and 25 days of floor debate in the U.S. Senate.
Now that the GOP wants to ram through the Graham-Cassidy bill on a straight party line vote before the end of the month, the GOP has conveniently “forgotten” it’s commitment to a fair and transparent process. Perhaps these process complaints weren’t grounded in good faith after all.
As a starting point, the Republicans have offered up a huge bribe to buy the vote of Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska. McConnell has promised to essentially allow Alaska to maintain the ACA while the other 49 states face huge cuts in health care spending. If Graham-Cassidy is so great and the ACA is so bad, why this bribe?
The Vox website interviewed 9 GOP Senators earlier this week and asked them to explain why they supported the bill. The incoherent answers from these 9 Senators indicated that they had no clue what was in the legislation.
“They can do it with less money,” said Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), who was unable to explain how or why. Senator Pat Roberts (R-Kansas) tried to draw an analogy between the current health care debate and the 1991 movie “Thelma and Louise.” It was evident none of the 9 Senators had read the bill.
At the same time, Senator Bill Cassidy (R-Louisiana) has been making a series of misleading statements claiming that his bill would protect the sick or those who may get sick. Once again, it was obvious that another Republican Senator didn’t have the foggiest idea what was contained in his own bill. As Nobel Prize winning Paul Krugman tweeted: “Think about what it means that Jimmy Kimmel has evidently done more homework on healthcare than any Republican senator over the past 8 years.”
“If there was an oral exam on the contents of the proposal, graded on a generous curve, only two Republicans could pass it. And one of them isn’t Lindsey Graham,” a senior GOP aide told a reporter.
There will also be no CBO score on a bill that would shake up 1/6 of the nation’s economy. Deb Fischer in the past called for a CBO score on any health care legislation but now she has broken that promise and come out in favor of Graham-Cassidy.
Former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough weighed in on the lack of a CBO score: “If you vote to reorder one-sixth of the US economy without a CBO score, never call yourself conservative again. You are a dangerous radical.”
And we have now just learned that McConnell will only allow 90 seconds of debate on the Graham-Cassidy bill next week. Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz blasted for Republicans for this “abomination,” calling their efforts “legislative malpractice.”
Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman said it best: “The lesson here is never to take right-wing huffiness about the process of politics and political debate seriously. These guys don’t actually believe in any rules at all; whatever rule they may lay down in one case, they’ll break in an instant if they think they see an advantage.”